Ulcer, however, small can cause a lot of pain and disturb the daily functioning of your body. Here is everything you need to know about Ulcers. 

Ulcer meaning

Generally, when we hear about ulcers, we often presume it has to do with some red blisters in the mouth that inflict a great amount of pain. However, ulcers are open sore found in the interior as well as the exterior of the body. It is caused by a failure of the mucus membrane, which had failed to heal. An ulcer is an eroding break on the skin surface. For example, in peptic ulcers, the thick layer which occurs as mucus and saves the stomach from digestive juices is reduced, and it causes an ulcer. 

Ulcer Detection

Generally, when there is an ulcer growing in your mouth, it’s almost visible to as well as to your physician. You can feel the burning sensation near the sore when you eat or chew food. The mouth and skin ulcers are easily detected because of their clear visibility. However, ulcers on the inside of your body, such as peptic ulcers, are difficult to examine. To diagnose them, to know the medical history, doctors may perform certain medical tests. Endoscopy is the most common of them all

In endoscopy, the doctor passes a thin tube through the oesophagus, and it has a lens to examine the stomach and small intestine. It is conducted to see whether there is ulcer bleeding or tissue damage. 

Ulcer Consultation 

If the pain from the ulcers becomes unbearable, then you must consult a specialist. Mouth ulcers mostly go untreated, and they may cause a lot of problems while eating.

Here are some signs when you need to see a doctor or get an appointment.

  • Fever of 100.4° F or higher
  • Swelling, bleeding from any incision.
  • Difficulties in swallowing 
  • Sore throat for more than a couple of days
  • Stomach pain that does not go away
  • Tarry or bloody stools

Ulcers can be of several types, which makes it more difficult to diagnose or treat them. An infection mostly causes them along with bacteria Helicobacter pylori (H. Pylori) and many dosages in the long term of anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin. A peptic ulcer is caused by high acid in the stomach, which leads to sore breakout-causing distress. Your primary care doctor will refer you to a specialist for better treatment.

A Gastroenterologist focuses on digestive disorders. They are the ones whom you can consult for the treatment of an ulcer.  

Ulcer Symptoms 

Depending upon the type and severity of the ulcer. The most common symptom is feeling discomfort or irritation at the centre of your chest and around the belly. It can last for a few minutes or even hours. 

Ulcer causes symptoms like 

  • Acid Reflux
  • Bloating
  • Slight pain in the stomach
  • Nausea 
  • Heartburn
  • Dark stools
  • Vomit but in a brownish colour

These are some common symptoms that people face when they have an ulcer. You can face different symptoms. For example, for a person with a peptic ulcer, the symptoms might be much worse, which lead to a high risk of bleeding and needs to be treated right away.  Hence, it becomes imperative that you get checked up by the best gastroenterologist to prevent further damage.

Ulcer Precautions

Living with an ulcer can be a tough and challenging task. Hence, one should take conscious efforts to avoid getting them in the first place. Here are some measures which you can take and prevent ulcers.

  • A good diet will always be on the top of the precaution list. Avoid eating anything which upsets your stomach. Mostly less intake of spicy food, citrus fruits, and food with fats is considered a good choice or can totally avoid that.
  • Smoking is injurious to health, but it also adds the risk of getting more ulcers than people who don’t smoke.
  • Ulcers may also develop as a result of  Alcohol abuse. Hence, it is advised that you quit drinking or drink moderately. 
  • Know how to manage your stress levels. Exercise regularly and relax your mind in suitable ways possible.

Ulcer Medication 

Medication is prescribed to you based on the ulcer type to kill the H. Pylori bacteria if it is present. While the Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may give you temporary relief, it is advised that you stop their use. It is recommended that you seek proper treatment from an expert to heal the growing ulcer.

  • Medications to control acid production and support healing.- 

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are calcium supplements, and they reduce the acid flow by halting the action of the parts which produce this acid. The medication is prescribed as omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), rabeprazole (Aciphex).

  • Medications to reduce acid production.

Histamine (H-2) blockers is an acid blocker. It reduces the acid amount produced in the digestive tract to ease up the healing process and calms the ulcers pain.

  • Antacids

To neutralize the existing stomach acid, a doctor may include it in the prescription. It provides relief to the ulcers symptoms but does not help with the healing process.

  • Medications to protect the stomach lining and intestine.

The prescription medications sucralfate (Carafate) and misoprostol (Cytotec) are some cytoprotective agents, which safeguard the tissues in your stomach and small intestine.

Ulcers can be difficult to deal with, however, with the right treatment. You can cope up soon. 

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